Subsiding winds and warming temperatures to start the work week

Sunday, March 17, 2024

Temperatures are nearly forty degrees in Steamboat Springs and twenty degrees at the top of the Steamboat Resort under mostly sunny skies late this Sunday morning. Today will be the last day of breezy winds from the east ahead of sunny skies and warming temperatures through midweek, highlighted by the vernal equinox occurring on Tuesday, March 19 at 9:06 PM. The weather may turn unsettled by the end of the work week ahead of a pattern change that may bring storms back to our area by the end of next weekend.

A long-lived eddy of low pressure currently over Phoenix is trapped underneath a ridge of high pressure centered over the northern Rockies. A wave of energy that earlier traveled over the ridge of high pressure is currently bringing cold weather to the Midwest and is close enough to our area to reinforce the easterly winds being drawn into the eddy to our southwest.

So we can expect one more day of breezy winds from the east, and perhaps some clouds tonight as the Midwest wave grazes our area before beautiful sunny skies and warming temperatures grace our area starting Monday. A high temperature around our average of 46 F is forecast in town on Monday with fifty degrees possible on Tuesday.

Also, Tuesday will mark the beginning of astronomical spring as the sun is directly over the equator at 9:06 pm. While this date is usually closer to March 21, the extra day in February thanks to a leap year has pulled the vernal equinox forward a day earlier. The increase in daylight will be maximized at two minutes and forty-one seconds per day after which daylight will increase more slowly until the summer solstice on Thursday, June 20 at 2:50 PM.

By Wednesday, that eddy of low pressure will have weakened and is forecast to be carried through New Mexico by a wave of energy in the subtropical jet stream. Additionally, another wave moving down the east side of the ridge of high pressure to our north will graze our area, and we may see several degrees of cooling and some clouds as both features skirt our area. If the eddy moves further north than currently forecast, we will see more clouds and perhaps even some showers.

Temperatures will stay around our rising average of 47 F on Thursday as clouds begin to invade our area ahead of an active weather pattern advertised to start in earnest by the end of the weekend. So enjoy the quintessential spring weather to start this work week and be sure to check back to my next regularly scheduled weather narrative on Thursday afternoon for more details on our next accumulating snowfall.

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31 May 2021

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